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Five Things You Should Know About Middle Tennesee State

1. First and foremost, they're Middle Tennessee State. The Blue Raiders haven't been to a bowl game since 1964, and their record since moving to D1-A in 1999 is 34-43. They became an active member of the Sun Belt Conference in 2001 and have endured just one winning season since then. They are 0-10 all-time against ranked opponents.

A loss to a program with this type of tradition (or lack thereof) regardless of any extenuating circumstances would send Louisville football back to that lonely dark place we never want to be again. Think South Florida tripping balls. Ok now think about the video where the little kid gets hit in the head with the basketball, because God damnit that's funny.

2.The Blue Raiders have the highest rated defense of any team the Cardinals have played thus far.  MTSU's defense has given up an average of 22.25 points a game and 271.5 total offensive yards per game, that's good enough for 11th in the country. They're also giving up just 4.8 yards a play.

3.Oklahoma beat them 59-0. The only time that 11th ranked defense tried to slow down a top 25 opponent, they gave up 462 offensive yards and endured their worst loss as a Division 1-A member.

MTSU has been outscored  83-10 in their only two games against major conference opponents (Maryland beat them 24-10 on Sept. 9).

4. Their running back is Gross. Eugene Gross (you put it on a tee and we're swinging away baby) leads an offense ranked 111th in the nation. The senior has rushed for 253 yards and five scores on 69 carries.

Veteran QB Clint Marks played arguably his best game of the season in the Blue Raiders' 35-0 win over North Texas last weekend, completing 13 of 18 passes for 154 yards, a touchdown and no picks. For the season he's thrown the ball to a man on his team who got into the endzone just three times, and has hit guys on the other team that number plus one.

What we're getting at is that their offense isn't very good at playing football.

5. George Clinton went to school there. You get the funkadelics in pads and we'll get nervous.


We know this isn't the same George Clinton, but we couldn't think of a good Red Shoe Diaries joke.

Bonus Fact: Their punter's name is Colby Smith. So if you're at the game shouting for Kolby Smith to autograph something for your kid and some Aaron Carter look-a-like comes over to you with a creepy smile on his face, just humor the poor boy.